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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot Press and Other Media, 97-09-02

Cyprus Press and Information Office: Turkish Cypriot Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>


TURKISH CYPRIOT PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA

No. 161/97 -- 2/9/97

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] TURKEY TIGHTENS ITS CAMPAIGN AGAINST S-300 MISSILES
  • [02] JACQUES POOS: TURKEY SHOULD BE THE FIRST TO INSIST ON CYPRUS' EU MEMBERSHIP
  • [03] CEM MEETS EU's POOS, HOPEFUL ABOUT OUTCOME OF TALKS
  • [04] POOS SEES CONSTRUCTIVE ATTITUDE ON CYPRUS AS ONE OF CONDITIONS FOR TURKEY'S EU MEMBERHIP
  • [05] TALAT: TURKISH CYPRIOTS ABANDONED THE TALKS
  • [06] SERDAR DENKTASH HOLDING CONTACTS IN TURKEY
  • [07] SECURITY FORCES COMMANDER" SPEAKS OF "BORDER REARRANGEMENTS"
  • [08] OFFICE OF CHIEF OF STAFF AND TURKISH FOREIGN MINISTRY DISAGREE ON HANDLING THE ISSUE OF SEARCHING SHIPS ALLEGEDLY CARRYING S-300 PARTS

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] TURKEY TIGHTENS ITS CAMPAIGN AGAINST S-300 MISSILES

    According to Turkish Daily News (1/9/97) Turkey is tightening its campaign against Greek Cypriot efforts to buy long range S-300 misiles from Russia and has renewed its threat to hit the missiles if Turkish attempts to stop the transportation of the Russian S-300 missiles to Cyprus failed. Turkey is also further intensifying measures in the Bosphorus by closely monitoring all ships, whether they are carrying any part of Russian missiles or not, in an effort to prevent the transportation to Cyprus of the S-300 missiles from Russia via the Bosphorus straits.

    Speaking to the Turkish Daily News, high-level military sources said that they will stop all suspicious ships sailing through the Bosphorus, "because its a country's right to stop these ships if there are concerns about their cargo."

    Sources commented that Turkey may face difficulties because of possible interpretations of the Montreux Agreement regulations which state that all commercial ships must be allowed to pass through the straits regardless of what the ships are carrying, except if Turkey sees that the ship is prepared for war against it or that its load may be later used for war against it. Turkey is taking this point of the agreement as applicable to this situation. An Egyptian ship, Al Qusair, was stopped recently and searched in the Marmara Sea on August 26, after military sources received a tip-off which said that the transportation of the missile parts had begun. No missile parts were found on board.

    A senior general who asked not to be identified said that Turkey's air zone is closed to any aircraft that carry Russian missiles to Cyprus and if any attempt is made, Turkish jets will be sent to intercept it.

    Another option that is open to Turkey is to ask Russian military authorities not to send their technicians to the island for training Greek Cypriots in how to use and set up the missiles, he said.

    The Foreign Ministry is reportedly still in contact with the United Nations Security Council to make a decision banning the sale of arms to the Greek Cypriots from anywhere in the world.

    The General Staff also asked the Foreign Ministry to make an effort to get the United Nations and other countries to condemn the Greece-Greek Cyprus Joint Defense Doctrine.

    Turkey is deeply concerned over recent Greek Cypriot comments claiming that Greece and Cyprus are planning to surround Turkey from the south. The senior general pointed out that "Turkey will do its best to prevent the missiles from being sent to Greek Cyprus for deployment". Turkey's efforts are being carried out under "the program to fight against Greek Cypriot armament buildup."

    The general said that if all attempts fail, the last step will be to hit the missiles in Cyprus under a directive from the government

    [02] JACQUES POOS: TURKEY SHOULD BE THE FIRST TO INSIST ON CYPRUS' EU MEMBERSHIP

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (1530 hours, 31/8/97) Jacques Poos, Luxembourg foreign minister and EU term president, has said that Turkey should extend its full support to Cyprus' full membership in the EU. Poos went to Ankara on a one-day working visit after concluding his visit to Athens.

    In reply to reporters' questions at Ankara's Esenboga Airport, Poos said that issues such as Turkish-EU relations and the recent developments in the EU will be discussed at the meetings with Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz and Foreign Minister Ismail Cem.

    Explaining that he will also discuss Turkey's full membership in the EU and Turkish-Greek relations with Yilmaz, Poos added: "I got to know Yilmaz only after he assumed the post of prime minister."

    Stressing that Turkish officials are aware of the general message he has brought along, Poos said: "This message is the same as that conveyed in the EU Agenda 2000 report. According to this report, Turkey is ready to join the EU in terms of its economy. As to the political dimension, however, Turkey has to achieve progress. I will take up this issue at the meetings as well."

    In reply to a question on whether the decision to start full membership negotiations with Cyprus in 1998 will contribute to a Cyprus solution, Poos said: "Yes, I sincerely hope so. Turkey should be the first to insist on Cyprus' membership in the EU. This would have been my view had I been a Turkish citizen. Furthermore, I would have said that the talks should proceed and Cyprus should become a full EU as soon as possible."

    In reply to another question, Poos noted that he brought a message from Athens. He said: "I met with Greek Prime Minister Simitis and Foreign Minister Pangalos. I cannot say that this is a message in the real sense of the word. The Greek stand is very clear, however, and I will convey it during my contacts."

    [03] CEM MEETS EU's POOS, HOPEFUL ABOUT OUTCOME OF TALKS

    According to TRT Television Network (1700 hours, 31/8/97) Jacques Poos, EU term president and Luxembourg foreign minister, met with Turkish Foreign Minister Ismail Cem.

    "We will explore whether it is possible to secure more positive solutions for both the EU and Turkey. For this reason, I am very happy to conduct this work with Mr. Poos and I am sure that these meetings will be very favourable", Cem said.

    Poos, in turn, said that the strategy to be adopted by the EU in connection with Turkey's EU membership will be taken up at the meetings. Explaining that the relations between Turkey and the EU gained momentum after the CU agreement, Poos said: "This, in turn, prompted several problems. These issues will be emphasized at tomorrow's meetings."

    [04] POOS SEES CONSTRUCTIVE ATTITUDE ON CYPRUS AS ONE OF CONDITIONS FOR

    TURKEY'S EU MEMBERHIP According to Turkish Daily News (2/9/97), repeating the European Union's known stance, the Union's term president Jacques Poos said on Monday that Turkey remained eligible for membership in this grouping provided it fulfilled certain criteria.

    Poos who was in Ankara for a working visit said "Turkey is part of the enlargement of the EU."

    After his three and a half hour-lasting meeting with Foreign Minister Ismail Cem, Poos told reporters that there are conditions to start to negotiations with Turkey for full memberhip.

    "We cannot start to negotiations with Turkey for full membership before these conditions are met. These conditions are good neighborly relations with Greece, a constructive attitude towards Cyprus and the solution of the Kurdish question."

    Poos' remarks brought nothing new to his visit to Ankara and left many analysts wondering why this visit had taken place, the paper says. Poos, brinking up a subject which is highly sensitive to Ankara, referred to the Kurdish issue, and maintained dialogue must be opened on this issue. He also called for "a political solution for the Kurdish issue," a suggestion which is anathema to Ankara.

    "The Cultural autonomy of Kurds must be recognized" Poos said.

    Stating that the problem of human rights is seen in many countries, Ismail Cem told reporters that concerning the solution of the problems with Greece, not only the two parties but also the third parties should prove that they were ready to pay positive efforts.

    Also declaring that Turkey was eligible for EU membership, Poos pointed out that the same conditions were being asked from states such as Slovakia. His putting Turkey in the same category as Slovakia was noted by analysts. Slovakia today is the butt of strong European criticism over its human rights record.

    Following his long talks with Cem, Poos met with Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz. Yilmaz told reporters before the meeting that they would try to prevent the EU from making "a mistake which will also be harmful for the EU itself".

    "In our meeting with Mr. Poos, we will also discuss our customs union with the EU which is facing problems because of the failure of the EU to fulfull its responsibilities", Yilmaz said.

    Luxembourg, as the term president of the EU, will host a key summit in December which will determine whether to accept the European Commission's recommendation and start accession talks with a small group of countries plus Cyprus.

    Turkey is not only annoyed at not being included in this list but is also angry at the inclusion of Cyprus in the list.

    Poos, insisted in Athens just before arriving in Turkey that the EU would go ahead with this talks.

    On Sunday Poos told reporters in Ankara that if he were a Turk he would push for the membership of Cyprus in the EU.

    [05] TALAT: TURKISH CYPRIOTS ABANDONED THE TALKS

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (1030 hours, 1/9/97) Republican Turkish Party (CTP) leader Mehmet Ali Talat has said that the desired progress was not achieved in the Glion talks. In fact, he said, the Turkish Cypriot side was not even able to maintain its original position.

    At a news conference at the CTP headquarters, Talat commented on the talks held in Troutbeck and Glion.

    Talat charged that the Turkish Cypriots who wanted to hold the talks and who constantly called on the Greek Cypriots - who said there was no common ground for the talks - to come to the negotiating table, ended up being the party that set preconditions and that abandoned the negotiating table. Discussing the process that took place until the publication of the EU's Agenda-2000, Talat said that the Turkish side acted as if the report's section on Cyprus was something new, while it was a repetition of the things said since 1995. He added that what was new in the report was Turkey's exclusion from the list of candidate countries. This was a separate issue and should have been assessed as such, he said, not linked to the Cyprus question. Talat noted that in this way a solution was obstructed unnecessarily. Talat also charged that as a reaction to the EU report, the Turkish Cypriots and Turkey signed an agreement on an "association countil." This, he said, reinforced the belief that the Turkish Cypriot side is intransigent and that Turkey uses the Cyprus question as a tool to improve its relations with the EU. The CTP leader noted that the tactics and methods used in the negotiations pushed the Turkish Cypriots into an isolation they do not deserve, adding that this situation must change as soon as possible. He stressed that the basic principle must be sincere attempts to reach a federal solution on the basis of the Ghali Set of Ideas. He added that being a political partner in a federation will be important for the positive development of the Turkish Cypriots' and Turkey's relations with the EU.

    Talat stressed that Denktash is the negotiator of the Turkish Cypriot community, and must, therefore, involve the Turkish Cypriot press and the political parties in every stage of the problem.

    [06] SERDAR DENKTASH HOLDING CONTACTS IN TURKEY

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (1530 hours, 1/9/97) Serdar Denktash, "state minister and deputy prime minister", is in Turkey for talks. Serdar Denktash left the island last Sunday in line with a so-called Countil of Ministers decision. He will hold talks in Ankara and Istanbul and return to the island Tuesday.

    [07] SECURITY FORCES COMMANDER" SPEAKS OF "BORDER REARRANGEMENTS"

    According to ORTAM (2/7/97) the commander of the so-called security forces in the occupied area, Brigadier General Hasan Peher Gunal, speaking at the swearing in ceremony of so-called "police" trainees, has said that with the political settlement in Cyprus some "border rearrangements might take place". However, he added, "the flag is hoisted, and this will not be changed and the struggle will continue."

    He said: "However, everything has not came to an end. We have hoisted our flag, we have drawn our borders. We have yet to be recognized. The struggle is continuing".

    And he went on: "Friends, we will not lower this flag, we will not change these borders. Maybe, through a political settlement some border rearrangements can be realized, but we have made this soil our fatherland with our blood and life. We have hoisted our flag. This will not be changed, this struggle will go on.

    There will not be any side-stepping from this national cause. This flag will not be lowered. This soil will continue to be our fatherland. It is possible that in political settlement a different form of state might come out. This could be federation, confederation or any other form. It is not important. Whatever happens this fatherland will continue to exist." (MY)

    [08] OFFICE OF CHIEF OF STAFF AND TURKISH FOREIGN MINISTRY DISAGREE ON HANDLING THE ISSUE OF SEARCHING SHIPS ALLEGEDLY CARRYING S-300 PARTS

    According to YENIYUZYIL (1/9/97) Turkey's obsession regarding the S-300 missiles bought by Cyprus to reinforce its air defence against the much superior Turkish Airforce, has brought Turkey's Office of the Chief of Staff and the Foreign Ministry face to face.

    The paper says that following a tip-off, two ships, one a Honduras registered ship and the other a Guinea registered ship, were stopped at the Bosphorus last night so that Turkish port authorities could search them and find out whether they were carrying S-300 launching parts and platforms. However, adds the paper, the two ships, "Are" and "Seamare", were not searched following the intervention of the Turkish Foreign Ministry, with the fear that the intelligence report might not be exact and this might cause an international "scandal". On the other hand the Chief of Staff insists that the ships should be searched.

    (MY)


    From the Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office (PIO) Server at http://www.pio.gov.cy/


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